The Revere Bell
The Revere Bell
Milford's most important historic asset is the Paul Revere bell which originally hung in the Eagle Hall and now hangs in the Town Hall belfry. The bell still strikes the hour faithfully. It was given to the town in 1802 by Perkins Nichols of Boston, a friend of Reverend Humphrey Moore. Milford's first settled minister. At the time the gift was made the Congregational Church and the town both used the Eagle Hall, and the bell was tolled for church, joyous occasions and deaths of noted national and local citizens. The bell came to Milford by ox team.
There are only eight Revere bells in existence older than Milford's bell. Paul Revere started casting bells in 1792 and cast only 135 in all before his son Joseph Warren Revere entered the business about 1809. Of these 135 there are only 23 which exist anywhere. Milford's bell was the 56th cast by Paul Revere and is the only one which has never been repaired.
The Paul Revere Bell number 56 has hung in the Milford Town Hall since 1869. The bell was cast in the Boston foundry of Revere & Son in 1802 and was given to the Town in that same year by Mr. Perkins Nichols, Esquire. It first hung in the old meeting house, now known as "Eagle Hall", and moved to the "new" Town Hall tower in 1869. This is one of the oldest genuine Paul Revere bells in New Hampshire. It can boast of having tolled the death of every President of the United States except George Washington.
The bell is thirty (30) inches (76.20 cm) high overall with a diameter at the shoulder of sixteen (16) inches (40.64 cm) and a diameter at the mouth of almost thirty-three (33) inches (84 cm). The sound bow circumference is approximately one hundred (100) inches (254 cm) with an overall weight of eight hundred and two (802) pounds (364 kg). The bell is inscribed "The gift of Perkins Nichols Esqr." on one side and "Revere & Son Boston 1802" on the other.